Julie Dixon jailed for David Twigg murder

A woman who murdered her fiance by locking him in a cupboard and starting a fire has been given a life sentence.

Julie Dixon, 43, from Lincolnshire, admitted murdering David Twigg but said it was part of a suicide pact.

Prosecutors rejected that claim and a further hearing was held at Lincoln Crown Court to establish her motive.

After hearing evidence, Judge Michael Heath said Mr Twigg "did not want to die" and jailed Dixon, of Burgh le Marsh, for a minimum of 23 years.

'Oscar nomination'

The judge told Dixon: "What you did to him was evil in its conception and execution."

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Media captionDixon rang 999 claiming she and her fiance had been attacked by robbers

He added that Dixon's lies were worthy of an Oscar nomination.

"Her performance in the 999 call and to the emergency crews at the scene, including to the firefighters and at the hospital, would have been worthy of the highest praise had she been an actress in some fictional drama and would have warranted an Oscar nomination," said Judge Heath.

"I am sure that this was not an assisted suicide. I am sure it was a premeditated killing.

"David Twigg did not want to die."

Masked intruders

The evidence heard by the judge included a 999 call Dixon made on the night she killed her partner at a workshop next to their home in Station Yard.

Image caption Dixon claimed David Twigg had wanted to die

She claimed two masked intruders locked Mr Twigg in the storeroom cupboard at the workshop and set the premises on fire.

Mr Twigg died from the effects of smoke inhalation and his body was found in the locked cupboard.

In a statement after his death, Dixon said: "I am so numb with pain, my heart is broken. I've not just lost my partner of 15 years, I've lost the love of my life, my best friend and soul mate."

Dixon went on trial for murder last month but changed her plea to guilty on the second day.

She said Mr Twigg's death was the result of a failed joint suicide pact, only to later change the story again, claiming Mr Twigg had wanted to die and she had assisted his suicide.

'Treated as daughter'

After Dixon was sentenced, Det Ch Insp Stuart Gibbon, of Lincolnshire Police, said: "Even now, she has failed to admit her full involvement in the death of David Twigg and we may never know the full circumstances of why she carried out the actions she did.

Image caption Roy and Janice Twigg said they treated their son's killer as a daughter

"David was a hard working, respected member of the community whose life was cut short in a brutal way and I hope his family and friends are able to take some comfort from the outcome of the court case."

In a statement after Dixon's sentence, Mr Twigg's parents said: "We have lost our only son, David, at the hands of someone we have loved and treated as a daughter.

"David was a kind, decent, hard-working man who took great pride in that work and the service he provided to people.

"We do not want to comment on our thoughts about Julie Dixon who has finally admitted to murdering our wonderful son but have to say we are happy to see justice finally done and will leave her with her own thoughts."

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